At 9:00 am, the Operational Center of the Mountain Rescue Service received a call from a citizen about an accident that happened to his friend during a fall on rocky terrain, while they were collecting forest fruits. To locate the scene of the accident, the SMS location system was used, which was established within the project “Ohrid Lake Region – Safe Destination for Adventure Tourism”, funded by the European Union, cross-border cooperation program MK-AL. Immediately after locating the crash site, two MRS teams headed to the scene and arrived at 10:35 am. The injured person was immediately given first aid, heavy bleeding was stopped and immobilization of the whole body was performed, after which a complex procedure for transport and evacuation of the injured person started. Due to the inaccessibility of the terrain, the carried out action for evacuation of the injured person was one of the more complex actions including 7 rescuers and appropriate equipment for rescue on a delicate terrain. At 13:50, after 3 hours and 15 minutes, the injured person was evacuated and handed to the Emergency Medical Service. He was provided with professional medical care on the spot, after which he was transferred to an appropriate health institution for further treatment.
With this sixth in a row intervention, we are approaching a record average of one intervention per month, which once again indicates the need for an efficient rescue system on a mountain and inaccessible terrain, especially in the regions where various forms of adventure tourism are developed.
We take this opportunity to once again express our gratitude for the sacrifice of the volunteers from the Mountain Rescue Service at the Red Cross Ohrid, as well as the members of the MoI Ohrid and the Emergency Medical Service, who are always maximally committed to helping the Mountain Rescue Service.
We wish the injured person a speedy recovery, and once again we appeal to all lovers of the mountain and nature, who move in the border region around Lake Ohrid, to bring with them appropriate equipment, first aid, and mobile phones with a fully charged battery, on which they will previously install the application for quick alert of MRS or will memorize the special number for SOS calls 13-112, on which 24 hours, 7 days a week can turn for help.
Today, at 11:45 am, the operational center of the Ohrid Red Cross Mountain Rescue Service received a call from the Emergency Medical Service at the Ohrid Health Center, for assistance in retrieving an injured person, who fell out of the regional road Ohrid – Resen, near the village of Svinjishta. The MRS Operations Center immediately mobilized two teams, completely equipped for rescuing on a complex technical field. They arrived at the scene at 12:15, and immediately started pulling out the injured. Fortunately, he was conscious, but with severe limb injuries. Members of the Territorial Firefighting Unit from Ohrid arrived before at the scene of the accident and were the first to approach the injured and assisted in the rescue operation.
This intervention is the fifth in a row since the beginning of this year, which once again confirms the need for an efficient system for rescuing on a mountain and on inaccessible terrain, which is necessary for the most delicate operations to save human lives.
Ohrid Red Cross MRS congratulates and expresses its gratitude to all its members/volunteers for their sacrifice in this, as well as in past actions, especially those carried out in the period from the beginning of the corona virus pandemic when despite all other dangers, personal security is further compromised. We would also like to express our special gratitude to the members of Territorial Firefighting Unit Ohrid who gave their best to help our Service. We believe that ours and their motto is “Together we are stronger.”
We wish the injured in this serious traffic accident good health and a speedy recovery.
Today, April 22, Earth Day is celebrated in more than 175 countries. The purpose of the celebration is to raise the level of awareness and knowledge for preserving and promoting the environment, as well as to point out the consequences of water, air, soil pollution, and energy depletion on the planet Earth. The Ohrid Red Cross Mountain Rescue Service joins the celebration of this day and stands for these values.
Make every day #EarthDay save the planet
#ipa2cbcmkal 🇪🇺 🇲🇰 🇦🇱 #EUwithYOU
We believe that you, the people who love nature and associating with the mountain, often feel safer on the mountain than in the urban jungle of cities and that you are an example of a healthy lifestyle. That is why we also exist, to encourage you to enjoy the mountains more often and to “infect” others with the “virus” of the mountain.
But in these difficult moments for mankind, when the whole planet is faced with an invisible enemy that many are suffering from every day, and countries are making available their full capacity in the fight against corona, we appeal to you to refrain from your sporting and recreational activities on the mountains, STAY HOME and show, as many times before, that you are real fighters for the protection of human lives.
Following the social media these days, we could see many using the beautiful and sunny time for activities on the mountain, even sending messages to the public that they are in “natural” isolation, in small groups, etc., hinting that coronavirus is not present in the open air, where a very few people seem to be moving. We always believe in your sincere intentions to stay healthy and protect others, but we also want to point out the following few aspects, which we believe you have inadvertently neglected and that you will take into consideration our following advice:
Many of your fellow citizens, who would normally be on the mountain, same as you, are currently having family members or themselves are a risky group of citizens, sit at home, respect the measures of the authorities and look at your photos.
The characteristics of the COVID-19 virus are easy human-to-human transmission, long-term survival in external conditions and on hard surfaces, as well as a long incubation period, during which humans have no symptoms and transmit the virus. Because of these characteristics, world health workers are calling for isolation. Since we do not know who is the carrier, even small groups are at risk, and let’s not forget that on the mountain, people often move in the same places and touch the same objects, such as hiking trails, sightseeing, mountaineering routes, benches, springs, etc., with which you inevitably come in direct contact, but at the same time, you do not know if anybody before you were at that same place and touched those same surfaces.
Beside the coronavirus, all the dangers on the mountain still lurk as before, which we believe you are aware of and know that no one is immune to them. Currently, the entire health system is geared to combat the pandemic, and all intensive care beds are reserved for the virus sufferers. Also, considering that some of the Mountain Rescue Service capacities are put into service to the Ohrid Red Cross Social Services in helping vulnerable categories of citizens, the risk to your health and safety is several times higher than usual, and the additional engagement of health care staff reduces the chance of helping someone affected by the virus.
Disrespecting the recommendations of the competent institutions is at least irresponsible and selfish behavior, which leaves a bad impression about the mountaineering community.
Because we believe in you and exist for you, we are convinced that you know how to BE RESPONSIBLE CITIZENS who value everybody’s life, and we urge you to STAY HOME and LET US WORK to help our fellow citizens.
On February 12, 2020, on the border crossing Saint Naum a promotion of the project “New Opportunities for Safe Winter Adventure Tourism” was held. This project is funded by the European Union, through the Cross-border Cooperation Program with the Republic of Albania. Partners of this project, in addition to the Ohrid Red Cross MRS, are also the Alpine Club Patagonija Ohrid, Debrca municipality and the municipality of Gramsh, Albania. The main goal of the Project is to further promote the socio-economic development of the wider Ohrid-Prespa cross border region through sustainable tourism development and promotion of high safety standards in tourism. For the Mountain Rescue Service, this project will provide complete equipment for the safe operation of rescuers in winter conditions, as well as special off-road vehicles equipped with caterpillars and trailers for the transport of injured people in snowy conditions. This equipment will significantly improve the capacity of the Service as well as its efficiency in the winter.
At the ceremony, the Ohrid Red Cross Mountain Rescue Service and the National Coordination Center for Border Management signed a Memorandum for cooperation, aimed at coordinating the operation of the rescue service team so that they can cross the border as quickly as possible and intervene to rescue as soon as possible on the Albanian territory. This memorandum is the first step in the process of creating a special protocol, which will in the future enable the Mountain Rescue Service, with all its equipment, vehicles and rescuers, to cross the border at official border crossings or so-called green crossings without interruption, but also by helicopter if necessary for the effectiveness of the action. This means a systematic improvement of the security conditions in tourism, as well as greater security of the population of the cross-border region.
Mr. Sasho Tockov, President of the Ohrid Red Cross noted that the establishment of a system for efficient operation of the Mountain Rescue Service and the launch of the new project will complete the long-standing commitment to the security system and conditions for all tourists, lovers of the mountain, as well as for the mountain lovers and all residents of this region.
Mr. Nicola Bertolini from the EU Delegation for Cooperation and Development, for his part, pointed out that the European Union has always recognized and will support in the future all projects promoting cross-border cooperation as one of the most important priorities under EU support programs.
The Minister of Local Self-Government, Mr. Goran Milevski, the Director of the Customs Administration, Mr. Gjoko Tanasoski, as well as the mayors of the municipalities of Debrca and Gramsh, Mr. Zoran Nogacevski and Mr. Klodian Taçe, expressed their satisfaction for such successful projects, which affect not only the economic development of the region but also contribute to the promotion of tourism potentials of the municipalities.
Following the promotion, an initial workshop was organized at the St. Naum Hotel, with representatives of relevant institutions from both countries.
The Mountain Rescue Service, in the evening hours, was pulling out a car stuck on the Baba pass on Mount Galicica. Performing regular training activities and check-ups of the terrain and mountain conditions, tonight the Mountain Rescue Service team found a car stuck with two passengers at the Baba pass and assisted in pulling it out of the snow with an off-road vehicle. This pass of the road R-2332, through the mountain Galicica, is completely blocked off the snow. The MRS appeals to mountain lovers and winter adventurers to be extremely careful on this road, which currently has heavy snowfalls, frozen ground, and landslides, jeopardizing the safety of road users. We also remind you that the same road is restricted in winter, with only 9 km of traffic allowed, from Trpejca to Korita picnic area, while the rest is closed to traffic.
At 13:46 pm today, the Mountain Rescue Service received a notification from the Ministry of Interior Ohrid about an accident on rocky and inaccessible terrain in the “Labino” area. A team of six mountain rescuers arrived at the scene immediately, but unfortunately due to the severity of the fall and the seriousness of the injuries, it was impossible to do anything to save the life of the injured person. After falling from a high altitude, the victim’s body was found near the lakeside shore, where, with the support of a border police boat, the death was confirmed by an Emergency medical team, after which an appropriate inspection was conducted to determine the causes of the fall. The Ohrid Red Cross Mountain Rescue Service regrets the unfortunate event and appeals to all nature lovers to be especially careful when moving on rocky and steep terrain, where low temperatures lead to ice and danger of slipping, with potential for serious consequences.